It's difficult to believe, but I'm eager to develop and encourage blogging activity and responding, as I'm going to start posting here more often.
Fellow The Royal Treatment posters may disagree with me, and at the risk of sounding a bit pompous, I'll go ahead and submit an official The Royal Treatment Top 20 Royals Prospect list. Since I founded the site, it's probably a necessary evil.
I've organized each prospect by star ranking and have assigned each player a letter grade. I've provided their projected 2009 destination, as well, and estimated time of arrival to the big-leagues. Also provided is a short comment or two about that particular player. Any thoughts?
The Moose heads the first annual TRT prospects list for '09.
1. Mike Moustakas *****, A, A+ Wilmington, ETA: 2011
Legitimate stud who should battle for middle of order by beginning of decade. Plus-plus arm, contact, and power. Likely 3B or COF. Projected line: .300/.360/.500
2. Eric Hosmer *****, A, A Burlington, ETA: 2012
Another All-Star in the making. I see him as a contact hitter, first, and a power hitter, second. 1B or COF.
3. Kila Kaaihue ****1/2, B+, AAA Omaha, ETA: Mid-2009
I'm higher on him than most fellow bloggers. His extraordinary plate discipline and power foundation will pay dividends, soon, I think.
4. Daniel Cortes ****1/2, B+, AAA Omaha, ETA: 2010
#2 starter in the making. Could be in K.C. by September '09.
5. Daniel Duffy ****1/2, B+, A+ Wilmington, ETA: Mid-2011
Left-handed starter reminds me of a Darrell May 2003 version with better stuff. Possible mid 90's stuff but projects as more of a finesse man, for me, at least.
6. Tim Melville ****, B, R+ Idaho Falls, ETA: 2012
The gem of the 2008 draft. He represents the change in draft philosophy for the Royals. Right-hander possesses the entire package, as a pitcher. Possible #2 or #3.
7. Mike Montgomery ****, B, A Burlington, ETA: 2012
Some scouts rank him higher than #7. #3 starter, I think.
8. Carlos Rosa ***1/2, B, MLB Kansas City, ETA: 2009
5-star reliever and 4 1/2-star closer. Plus-plus fastball and slider. I think he'll be Octavio Dotel without the injuries.
9. Daniel Gutierrez ***1/2, B, A+ Wilmington, ETA: Mid-2011
One Royals scout ranked him higher than Cortes on the prospect depth chart. I love his curveball. Possible #2, but needs to build off promising '08.
10. Jason Taylor ***1/2, B-, A+ Wilmington, ETA: Mid-2011
My personal favorite. I'll be rooting for that speed, plate discipline, and power to manifest again next year.
11. Johnny Giavotella ***1/2, B-, A+ Wilmington, ETA: 2011
Gritty second baseman could provide for a little Dustin Pedroia-like excitement in K.C. come '11.
12. Blake Wood ***1/2, B-, AA Northwest Arkansas, ETA: 2011
Mentioned as that 'throw in' prospect for any trade scenario involving MLB-ready vets, it seems. I see Wood as a potential dominant relief pitcher, but likely no better than a fourth starter at the big-league level.
13. Jeff Bianchi ***1/2, C+, AA Northwest Arkansas, ETA: 2011
Rebounded a bit in '09. Really needs to finally show the hype that surrounded him in the '05 draft. Michael Young??!!! More like Michael 'None' until '08, where he displayed a power spike. Let's see if he can build it in NWA this year.
14. Julio Cesar Pimentel ***1/2, C+, AA Northwest Arkansas, ETA: Mid-2010
Groundball-extraordinaire. With his repertoire, I see him as a reliever-first. We'll see.
15. Joe Dickerson ***1/2, C+, AA Northwest Arkansas, ETA: 2011
Needs to continue to hit for power to project as a cornerman prospect.
16. Tyler Sample ***1/2, C+, R+ Idaho Falls, ETA: Mid-2012
Growing pains in '08. He's a long ways off. Tremendous potential. We'll see.
17. Derrick Robinson ***, C+, AA Northwest Arkansas, ETA: 2011
Joey Gathright-lite. Absolutely needs to develop power. My #17 ranking is generous. The organization loves his toolsiness and speed.
18. David Lough ***, C+, A+ Wilmington, ETA: Mid-2011
610 Sports radio personality Greg Schaum loves this corner OF. Under-the-radar prospect if I've ever seen one. Lefty-hitter.
19. Blake Johnson ***, C+, AA Northwest Arkansas, ETA: Mid-2010
Love his curveball and frame. I'm also friends with him on Facebook, and that'll earn extra points, but only for the bottom of this list.
20. Sam Runion ***, C+, A Burlington, ETA: 2012
K-BB troubles in Burlington forced him back to Rookie-ball in '08. Long ways away. Curveball is his best pitch.